It’s been 16 years since Geim and Novoselov discovered the wonder material graphene but, to date we have yet to see the graphene revolution from the breakthrough technology, but why is this? A recent report stated that for this to happen, there would be several factors that would need to be met:
“The key requirement for the graphene industry is an application-tailored graphene that is high-quality, cost-effective, reproducible at scale and provides a step-change in performance to meet global market requirements. To date, these requirements have not been fully addressed by companies.”
The Global Graphene Market Forecast to 2025, Frost & Sullivan
This has manifested into the current market situation whereby most current customers are largely in academia or other research industries, which leads to an oversupply of graphene due to their relatively low consumption. There are also concerns about the current level of high-quality graphene, as what is largely available presently on a large scale does not perform as well as laboratory-scale graphene due to a decrease in purity and greater defects.
Current graphene manufacture can be grouped into two categories: manufacture of graphene powder by, for example, exfoliation or growth of single-layer 2D/3D graphene by Chemical Vapour Deposition (CVD).
Graphene powder manufacturing is the main commercially available form of graphene and has seen huge investments. It is used for composite and battery applications, representing 64% of the current graphene market in 2019. Graphene powder is of low quality, prone to stacking, has poor reproducibility and provides limited performance increases beyond composites. Only the composite and battery markets accommodate graphene powder within their products. It is predicted the graphene market landscape and market size will change dramatically as more desirable forms of high-quality, pure, application-specific graphene become available to address global market needs, surpassing graphene powder.
CVD is a vacuum process performed at high temperatures unsuitable for direct manufacture on most desired products like plastic. It requires a catalyst substrate, transfers to the end product and etching of the catalyst. This is slow, costly and adds imperfections. Applications for graphene derived from these methods are niche, and market adoption has been slow as the market needs are not fully addressed, due to cost, scale or performance.
3D graphene is deemed to be the most desirable and application diverse form of graphene, due to its large electrochemically active surface area and it enables a step-change in performance in nearly all applications. Integrated Graphene has created, patented and commercialised a revolutionary design for manufacture process to produce high performing, pure 3D graphene foam, Gii, on any surface, in seconds. Through this novel, rapid and cost-effective production of high performing graphene, they are primed to deliver a market-ready, fully commercialised graphene solution that will enable the step change required to kick-start the graphene revolution. This will take it from the lab to the future technologies previously promised.
Integrated Graphene tailors and enhances Gii for specific applications to enable disruptive manufacturers across industries to access pure 3D Graphene Foam and develop products of the future, today, within each market.
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